Well, it’s just about time for me to send out query letters for my new book.

For those of you who aren’t familiar with the painful methodology for selling a book, let me compare it to having your wisdom teeth pulled without anesthetic, while simultaneously having your lower extremities consumed by flesh-eating bacteria.

It’s like a Justin Bieber concert without the luxury of earplugs and eye protection.

It’s like thinking no one knows I’m high, as you slow dance with your dog in the kitchen.

It’s that bad, and that frustrating, or so I’m told. I’m hoping to be the exception.

The first step for me will be to send out query letters to literary agents and see if any of them are interested in representing me and my book.

A query letter is basically a sales pitch that explains what the book is about, why it will sell, and why I’m the best person to write it. Extraordinary writing is the key here.

The query is the first impression, and it needs to be perfect. It needs to simple, effective, and to the point; keeping extraneous information to a minimum is important – the agent does not need to know that I frequently sit on the passenger side of the car and drive with a paper plate.

The rule of thumb is to send out 100 queries, and as a new writer, expect to get 2-4 replies. These are just replies, not an offer to represent me.

The prospective agent will then ask for a few sample chapters and a book proposal. If the agent is impressed, he/she might agree to represent me. If not, I will receive a rejection notice, wrapped around a brick, and thrown through my front window.

So come mid-March, I should have some idea of whether or not the past few years of writing a book was worth the effort.

Written by stevemargolis


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